•   forum   •   THIS WEEK'S CHAPTER: "THE FIDDLER!" •   fortress   •  


"This one is fun for lots of reasons... Swan and Klein on the art chores, Superman's ingenuity and courage minus super-powers, Luthor's untapped capacity for good, travels in time and space, and fate's tendency to favor the good guys when all is said and done."  Nightwing of Kandor

Comic Book Historian Michael E. Grost notes:
Luthor and Superman return to planet Lexor, where Luthor now gets super-powers.  This sequel to "The Showdown Between Luthor and Superman; The Super-Duel" develops a complete role reversal between Luthor and Superman.  Here it is Luthor who has super-powers, and Superman who is treated as an outlaw.  The role reversal elements are quite elaborate, and show wit and invention on Hamilton's part.  Hamilton liked stories in which characters took on other characters' roles.  The tale also embodies Hamilton's belief in progress, showing how much more advanced the residents of Lexor have become since Superman's first visit.  They now live in mighty cities, whose futuristic architecture recalls that of Krypton.

The cover of the issue points out the "irony" of the role reversals in the tale.  Words like "irony" and "coincidence" were frequently employed by the writers of the Superman family.  They explicitly underscore the plot parallels, correspondences and reversals in the tales.  Unlike most prose literature, coincidence was not seen as a bad thing in Superman.  This is because it was employed in a different way here.  Bad prose writers frequently used coincidence to get out of story traps, or to ignore logical development in their plots.  Coincidence was a form of cheating.  By contrast, coincidences in Superman are a form of ingenuity.  They show up for their own sake, for the readers to enjoy and admire.

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